Tuesday night sees Anfield play host to a re-run of last season’s Champions League Final. Our Liverpool vs Real Madrid predictions expect a familiar enemy of the Kop to be causing more headaches. Possibly with the assitance of a game-changing showing from the man in black.
Liverpool vs Real Madrid betting tips
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Salah’s scoring struggles cease on European nights
This hasn’t been a vintage season by Mohamed Salah’s recent ridiculously high standards, with a ‘mere’ 18 goals in 34 outings for club and country.
However, while the Premier League has been uncharacteristically hard going (yielding eight goals in 22 appearances), the Champions League has seen his sensational scoring rate continued unabated.
The Egyptian is joint-top of the UCL golden boot rankings having struck seven times in 6 appearances at a rate of a goal every 63 minutes.
Having bagged in a man of the match showing against Everton two games back he’s finding his way back into form at just the right time and can add an Anfield goal to the Santiago Bernabeu consolation he bagged in the first leg of the 2020/21 quarter finals.
Real’s chief Trent tormentor will be difficult to deny
Vinicius Junior has done more to deny Liverpool European glory than just about any other man over the past couple of campaigns.
Last season his goal was the difference as Los Blancos bested the Reds 1-0 in Paris to lift the Champions League trophy. The season before that his brace was the difference in a 3-1 quarter final first leg win that ultimately KO’d Liverpool, who could only draw the second leg 0-0 at Anfield.
Disconcertingly for the Reds the Brazilian left-side forward has his eye well and truly in ahead of this tie, netting six goals in his last nine games across all competitions including a match winning brace in the World Club Cup final against Al Hilal.
Hardline Hungarian referee can contribute to the drama
Players on both sides will have to be on their best behaviour to avoid censure from referee Istvan Kovacs. Of all the refs to oversee more than one game from this season’s group stage onwards his average yellow cards per game (5) is the fourth highest total.
Kovacs is particularly intolerant when it comes to goings-on inside the 18-yard box. He’s awarded four spot-kicks in three UCL assignments this season and gave three in five outings during the 2021/22 competition, including one for Real away to Manchester City.